TURKEY

287 terrorists neutralized so far in Turkey's Syria op

287 TERRORISTS NEUTRALIZED SO FAR IN TURKEYS SYRIA OP

At least 287 PKK/KCK/PYD-YPG and Daesh terrorists have been neutralized since the beginning of the Operation Olive Branch in Syria, Turkish General Staff said Wednesday.

Turkey on Saturday launched Operation Olive Branch to clear PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin, northwestern Syria.

Turkish authorities often use the word "neutralized" in their statements to imply that the terrorists in question either surrendered or were killed or captured.

In a statement, the military said Turkish Armed Forces had carried out airstrikes on the shelters, positions, arms and equipment of the terrorists between 9 a.m. (0600GMT) and 1.51 p.m. (1051GMT) on Wednesday.

Forty-seven terrorist targets were destroyed in total, the statement added.

According to the military, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkish borders and the region as well as protect Syrians from terrorist oppression and cruelty.

The operation is being carried out under the framework of Turkey's rights based on international law, UN Security Council resolutions, its self-defense rights under the UN charter, and respect for Syria's territorial integrity, it said.

The military has also said that only terrorist targets are being destroyed and "utmost importance" is being put on not harming any civilians.

Afrin has been a major hideout for the PYD/PKK since July 2012, when the Assad regime in Syria left the city to the terror group without putting up a fight

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